Chief Joseph and the Measuring Women

A docudrama adapted from the speech of Nez Perce Chief Joseph before Congress in 1879, field reports of early American ethnographer Alice C. Fletcher, and letters and photographs of Fletcher's companion during Nez Perce allotment, Jane Gay. Gay's photographs are incorporated throughout the production. Staged reading presented at the Daybreak Star Indian Cultural-Educational Center, Seattle, WA (1996). Negotiations underway for a premiere at the Nez Perce Reservation in Idaho.

 Chief Joseph Photo
In Keiko's House

Work-in-progress commissioned for upcoming production in Japan.

Mountain Thunder: The Ballad of Badger Clark

A stage adaptation of letters, poetry, stories, and essays by "Cowboy Poet" Badger Clark. This one-person touring production has been staged extensively throughout the Midwest and in Japan: at the Tatanka "Barn Theatre in Custer State Park (1994, 1991, 1986); State Theater in Mitchell, SD (1993, 1991); Kyoto Children's Theatre and Cultural Center, in Kyoto, Japan (1991); South Dakota Humanities Conference in Yankton, SD (1990); Dahl Fine Arts Center in Rapid City, SD (1989); Centennial West Conference in Billings, MT (1989), and Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell, SD (1986, 1985).

A film version (1997) was shot on location at the poet's Black Hills cabin, "The Badger Hole," by South Dakota Public Television, in conjunction with the Badger Clark Memorial Society and South Dakota Humanities Council.

A book version (1993) was published by University of South Dakota Press as Volume 4 of the Wayne S. Knutson Dakota Playwriting Series. [ISBN 0-929925-23-8]

 Photo of Darryl Patten as Badger Clark in Mountain Thunder
 Photo of Alicia Hunter as Josie in Josie! Josie! A One-Woman Musical
Book, Music, & Lyrics.

A local news anchorwoman pays an accidental visit to a therapist and reveals, through word and song, her touching and sometimes hilarious childhood dreams. Premiered by Serpent's Tooth Theatre at the Sheraton Inn, Ann Arbor, MI (1993). [Production video available.] Earlier one-act version entitled Secretions premiered at Dakota Wesleyan University (1982). The Acting Edition published in New-Scripts-in-Print Series. Vol. 3. Ann Arbor, MI: Serpent's Tooth Theatre, 1993

Leaves of Grass

Stage adaptation of Walt Whitman's 1855 edition, including original music. Premiered by Serpent's Tooth Theatre at the Performance Network, Ann Arbor, MI (1991). [Production video available.] The Acting Edition published in New-Scripts-in-Print Series. Vol. 1. Ann Arbor, MI: Serpent's Tooth Theatre, 1991.

 Photo of Tom Fiscella as Walt Whitman in Leaves of Grass
Left Living

Vivian Richards is a mother whose son has recently committed suicide. She is also a videographer who agrees to make a documentary on suicide as a means of dealing with her grief. Original video footage is incorporated into the production. Read at the Ann Arbor Playwrights (1992), Serpent's Tooth Theatre in Ann Arbor, MI (1989), and the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1988). Project awarded a Michigan Council for the Arts Mini-Grant (1990).

 Photo of Tim Cameron as Tim in Never too Young Never Too Young

Adaptation of several scenes by 7th graders into a play with music. Themes pertain to the fears and challenges confronted by today's youth. Premiered at Anwatin Middle School in Minneapolis, MN (1987). Project awarded a Dayton-Hudson Arts Initiative Grant, administered by the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1986).

Iowa Freeze

Two men are caught in a deadly blizzard on an Iowa highway. In their remaining time together, they share the underlying truth of their misunderstood relationship. Commissioned by the Jones One-Act Play Commission Program and presented in a staged reading at the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1985).

Andreyev and Andy

Two garbagemen--one Soviet and one American--swap trade secrets and humorous observations on each other's cultures. Premiered by the Illusion Theatre in Minneapolis, MN as part of The Illusion Show (1984).

The Spirit of St. Louie

The summer after Charles Lindbergh's legendary trans-Atlantic flight, Patrick Rutherford returns to his mythical hometown of Carapace, Wisconsin after his first year at college. The town has "changed," it seems, particularly in the light of Patrick's new personal ambitions. Patrick's awareness of human hypocrisy climaxes at the town carnival and annual awarding of the Downing Humanitarian Prize for human goodness. Staged readings presented at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, IL (1982, as part of the Midwest Playwright's Program); the Cricket Theatre in Minneapolis, MN (1982); and the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1982). Premiered at Inver Hills Community College in Inver Grove Heights, MN (1983).

 Spirit of St. Louie
The Mall Dwellers

A multi-media collaborative project about the strange denizens of American malls. Previewed as a work-in-progress at the Cricket Theatre in Minneapolis, MN (1982).

The World Does Not End in Sioux Falls

A recently widowed farmer befriends a hardworking farm girl who helps him perform the annual ritual of removing snakes, frogs, and mud from his water cistern. Read at the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1982).

Richard's Mother

A mute, paraplegic Vietnam veteran is forced by his suspicious, domineering mother to confront and destroy the childhood trinkets in his bedroom. Premiered by the Actor's Workshop at the State University of New York, Buffalo (1981).

Robert and Willie

A counter-play to the Brome mystery play, "Abraham and Isaac." Premiered at Episcopalian Arts Festivals in Williamsburg, NY and Fredonia, NY (1981). Later produced as part of the Quicksilver Project at the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN (1983).

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Created 11.29.97 Last Updated: 11.29.97